The Treasury Department released a report this week that suggests supervisors in the Internal Revenue Service turned a blind eye to fraud in a program designed to collect taxes from immigrants, legal and illegal, resulting in the agency handing out potentially unlawful refund payments. The Wall Street Journal reports:
The management failures—including a focus on processing applications quickly instead of accurately—allowed the creation of fictitious identities, meaning that some people who didn't qualify ended up with a taxpayer identification number, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration found. The result could be fraudulent tax returns, the report said. It didn't quantify the number of such returns, if any, or the extent to which people may have received tax refunds they didn't deserve.
The report examined one corner of the tax system, a segment that consisted of 2.9 million returns last year and resulted in $6.8 billion in refunds sent to people with taxpayer identification numbers. It is likely to add to existing concerns about identity fraud in the tax system, even though the IRS has indicated it plans to take many of the proposed corrective measures.
The IRS has recently announced a series of improvements that will take effect immediately on an interim basis in response to the Treasury findings. This is the same agency that is tasked with being the enforcement arm of Obamacare, enforcement that has been previously discussed on "Real News From The Blaze," as incapable of applying fines, levies or criminal prosecution.
In light of the most recent report regarding supervisors' lack of eagerness to detect fraud, along with longstanding criticisms of the agency, is it time that conservatives take a harder and more public line against the IRS? "Real News" debated this question Friday: